Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Drinks and a broadway show? What a way to end the day!

Once we exited the cable car and were safely back on land, we began our journey back to the hotel.  An hour of much needed rest was in order, but unfortunately we didn't have time to waste.  We had to get ready for our evening out on the town.  It was our last night in SF and we couldn't miss out on the night life!

The hubby spent about an hour on the phone the previous night trying to get us tickets to see Wicked.  Apparently the automated system for Ticket Master doesn't understand how to spell "La'akea" or the street that we live  (Isn't there a setting for Hawaiian?  No?)  The machine ended up booking our reservations and having us confirm them in person at the box office right before the show.  The cashier at the box office didn't seem too perplexed by the situation.  I guess it happens all the time.

First stop of the night, Bourbon and Branch.  It's an original speakeasy from the 1920s!  How freakin' cool is that?!?  Going with the whole Prohibition era theme, you have to make your reservations ahead of time online (Though they didn't have internet during the 1920s, so one would have had to have heard about it via word of mouth...small change in the times.).  Once the reservations are confirmed, they give you instructions on how to get there and a password that you must say to get in the door.

This, my friends, is the door.  No sign screaming "Bourbon and Branch right here!", just a door.
Okay so it has a little sign, but it doesn't say 'Bourbon and Branch'.  Actually it says the exact opposite of what a bar is, which goes with the Prohibition era theme.  I love themes.

You aren't allowed to take pictures or use your cell phone once inside the bar (again with the theme...), so I don't have any to share.  No, I didn't go all rouge and take a picture despite the rules.  I'm usually a rebel like that, but this bar is right on the edge of the Tenderloin district and I didn't want to get thrown out of an establishment in that district.  Not that anything would have happened, but who wants to tempt fate?  Not me.

The decore was very 1920s, with candles as the only light source and black and red brocade patterned wall paper.  Even the cocktail waitresses got into character.  For example, as we were being let in the door by the hostess someone walking by asked her what this place was.  She replied "Hmm?" and shut the door behind us.  Now if that's not staying in character, I don't know what is!

Not only was their theme amazing, but their drinks were fabulous too!  My personal favorite was called 'Death in the Afternoon'.  With ingredients like gin, raspberry and lime juice, ginger syrup, and Absinthe, shaken and served in a martini glass, how could I possibly have said no?  La'akea had a great margarita there, which we tried, unsuccessfully, to recreate once we got home.  I ended up asking B&B for the recipe a few days later.  And you know what?  Those sweethearts graciously gave it to me!  I couldn't believe it!  So maybe at my next cocktail party you'll be enjoying one of those...

Now that we were both two drinks deep, we hopped into a cab and headed over to the theater where Wicked was playing.
Me in front of the Wicked sign.  Why, did I bring that coat that I am wearing with me from Hawaii?  No.  Remember how it was cold earlier that day?  I decided that if I didn't buy a coat, at the conveniently located Burlington Coat Factory across the street from our hotel, that I would freeze my patooties off in my sleeveless white cotton shirt-dress and black tights.  Hey, I'm tropical!  We don't need sleeves in Hawaii!  But you sure do in SF...even during the summer.  Looking for a black Betsey Johnson coat with adorable heart shaped buttons, anyone?

Wicked was wickedly awesome!  We had floor seats (thanks "Best Seat Available" option on the Ticket Master automated system) and, bonus, no one's head was blocking my view.  Even the hubby enjoyed himself.

For those of you who haven't seen the production, here's a taste.  Sorry about the video quality, but what do you expect from someone's sneakily filmed in the theater YouTube upload?  No, it wasn't me that took the

After the performance we headed outside with the rest of the masses to hail a cab.  We thought that it would be wise to get away from the crowd a little bit to more easily hail a cab.  So we headed down the street following another couple.  We talked with them and walked a little ways down from the theater.  We all hailed a cab.  Thinking that they were going to be nice to the tourists and let us get the first cab, I was a little shocked when they jumped in and said "Sorry.  Hope you get a cab soon." and pretty much slammed the door shut and yelled to the cab driver to step on it.  (Did I fail to mention that the theater is also on the edge of the Tenderloin district?)  We hauled ass back towards the theater and were lucky enough to hail a cab right before we reached an area where a group of shady men were sitting outside of a store drinking fourties wrapped in paper bags.

Needless to say, when we arrived safely at our hotel we let out a sigh of relief.  I looked at my husband and said "So Napa tomorrow, huh?"  He replied "Yup."  And we left it at


  1. Wicked, how awesome. Always wanted to see it. That is so cool about the speakeasy. How did La'a find these things? You are making me want to take a trip up there now!

  2. He is the king of online research. I have no idea what he searched for, but he spent a few hours looking it all up and trying to keep me away from the

    Wicked was so worth it. If you make it there, you should definitely go and see it! The cast for Wicked SF has some of the original cast from the broadway show. They did a great job. The video doesn't even compare to the real thing.